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Bridgeport receives Kinsa FLUency grants for thermometers

BRIDGEPORT — As schools commence for the new year, Bridgeport Exempted Village School District is helping parents ensure their child’s health by obtaining a grant for digital thermometers.

District Nurse Gena Spurlock obtained a grant through Kinsa’s FLUency School Health Program to supply free smart thermometers to students’ parents and guardians. The devices, which value around $45 each, have a high-tech twist that allows readings to be reported confidentially to the district through a special smartphone app. Spurlock said there was a competitive application process and only 700 schools across the nation were recipients in the latest round. Bridgeport officials learned of the award in May and it was the first time the district has benefited from the program, and Spurlock said it is especially helpful amid this era of COVID-19.

“It allows anybody in the district–parents or staff–to receive free smart thermometers which connect to an app and anonymously records and reports any illness in the district, so I will know which classrooms to contact and can message parents and staff,” she said. “This was our first time in the program and it was perfect timing. Anything that can give a little bit of help is wonderful.”

Nearly 900 students attend Bridgeport schools and any parent wanting the thermometers can take part.

“I am sending out pamphlets to get them on a waiting list and we will put out more information on our school social media. We will update the information when the equipment is available,” she added, saying the thermometers may arrive around mid-September.

Superintendent Brent Ripley said the items added an extra measure of protection during this time of uncertainty.

“One of the things we’re asking families to do is a health assessment before the students come to school. These thermometers are another tool we can give to families at no cost,” Ripley said. “We’re sending out reminders to everybody on the district app and hope everyone can take advantage of it.”

More information will be available on the district’s website at bridgeportschools.net or @bpt–bulldogs on Twitter.

FLUency is Kinsa’s school health program and has partnered with sponsors for the past five years to provide the free thermometers and app to help detect and respond to spreading illnesses.

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